A parade of musicians you vaguely remember (and might wish you didn’t).

If you’ve noticed my absence this last week, it’s because I was down in the nation’s stinking hot capital volunteering with Pride. If you haven’t noticed my absence, that is still where I was.

Homosexuals the Gorilla
It was a lot of fun, thanks for asking. It was heartening to see so many sides of the community represented, and it was wonderful to see littlegays taking their first tentative steps out into a world of men walking about in chaps blowing bubbles everywhere as well as parents bringing their children along to be indoctrinated with  our super secret and insidious Gay Agenda.

Storming about with my not very exclusive backstage pass, I saw more artists eagerly waiting in the wings than I did dancing about on stage. But I did hear them! Here are the highlights of what I heard.
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Stop everything, it’s werewolf disco time.

If you’ve been following the bizarre She Wolf viral campaign, you’d be forgiven for thinking that it’s a reference to Billie Piper’s run on Doctor Who. Shaky Cloverfield cameras have been capturing footage of the infamous (not really) She Wolf, a primal popstar sex predator who’s been eating men’s faces all over the place while ostensibly promoting her new single. So is it a new Billie Piper single?

Loba viral

It’s not. Sorry, but we won’t be getting another Safe With Me or Day & Night any time soon. :(

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Incoming – your new favourite band with boys who sing and do electronic stuff.

These gentlemen are Fenech-Soler:

Fenech-Soler

They make very good new wave-y synthpop and at times might remind you of Friendly Fires – not that I want to start fights or am suggesting that there can only be one and that the two need to duke it out, because really I’d much rather they united to make Fenech Fires, perhaps for the release of a Run DMC/Aerosmith cover single.

Anyway. Their debut single, The Cult of Romance, came out last month (this is not exactly a scoop). It’s a fantastic slice of cool as fuck electropop on its own (it has BELLS), but it’s served well by an Alan Braxe remix that adds some lady vocals to the mix and makes the whole thing an even more laid back and effortlessly wonderful affair. Both the original and the remix have a brilliant “ee-yeah-ee-oh, oh oh” bridge which, I think you’ll agree, showcases the extent of Fenech-Soler’s lyrical prowess.

There also appears to be an EP, and they recently appeared in Mixmag. Brace yourselves for a “meteoric rise”, etc.

A quite alright pop comeback that we all missed.

In news from four months ago, Amy Studt is still around! Remember Amy Studt? She was the teen singer-songwriter who released the very good Just A Little Girl (thank Sophie Muller for the amazing video) and the less good Misfit. She wasn’t groundbreaking, but she was making serviceable pop that showed a lot of promise until she just disappeared after one album.

Fast-forward several years and she’s released a second album, My Paper Made Men (it’s a mixed bag but, again, shows a lot of pop potential), along with a string of quite good singles. The last single, released in March to little fanfare, was the amazing Nice Boys. Despite sounding a little dated, its poor performance and promotion may just be one of the big pop injustices of the year.

Here’s the video. It follows a flawless pop rubric – moody girl surrounded by pretty boys in formal wear who fawn over her, moody girl surrounded by pretty boys in formal wear who dance around her, moody girl surrounded by pretty boys who fight around her. It looks surprisingly glossy and made up for such a quiet little release.

Okay, so the single doesn’t exactly show much maturing on her part (the album provides a little more growth). In fact, some might say that it sounds a little bit like early Amy Studt, which sounds a little bit like Avril, Miley and Amanda Palmer (okay, 13 year-old Amanda Palmer) getting into an excitable scuffle. But it’s fun! It’s a fun pop song with a petulantly sung chorus. When she shouts “NICE BOYS FINISH LAST” in the background at the 0:40 mark, you’d be forgiven for thinking that you’re listening to Amanda Palmer’s Muppet Babies counterpart throwing her toys out of the pram. It may not be the best showcase of Studt’s growth as an artist, but it’s catchy enough that it probably deserved to create the same waves her initial string of singles did.

Poor Amy. She was last seen separating (i.e. being dropped) from her label and going on an adventure in NYC. Hopefully she’ll bounce back in some way, shape or form, because while Nice Boys isn’t the hallmark of a hard-hitting singer-songwriter coming into her own, it is an infectious little pop song that suggests that she may have some more guilty pleasures up her sleeve.

There was also an AMAZING remix doing the rounds.

TGIF: Giffing With.

Rising like a middle-of-the-road phoenix from the ashes of my now (hopefully) finished university career, No Ouais is ready to stop being dead! Hooray, right? Right. I return to you with an all new (“all new” unless you know me and my love for FourFour and ImageReady) weekly feature called TGIF. It is a thing where I talk about a music video or something with the help of gifs (TGIF, see), which happens on Fridays. Thank Gifs/God It’s Friday. See? Look, I’ll admit that it’s kind of a lackluster name but just wait for the gifs. The internet loves gifs!

This week I thought that it would only be right for our inaugural Friday gif-fest to focus on kooky chanteuse (I think I’ve got that tired descriptor out of my system now) Regina Spektor and her new single Laughing With. Because it’s about God, and thank God it’s Friday, and “oh God this is getting old already Andrew shut up.”

ReginaSpektor

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Album review: Filthy Dukes

Filthy Dukes – Nonsense in the Dark (Fiction)

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Filthy Dukes are Tim Lawton, Olly Dixon and Mark Ralph, a trio of DJ/producers who sharpened their teeth commandeering Fabric’s Kill Em All club night. Nonsense in the Dark sees the Dukes residing as pop royalty, assembling a court from the many acts who have passed through their dukedom, and the result is a collaborative beast that runs the gamut of indie dance from krautrock to synthpop. And somehow a giant masonic eye figures into all of this.

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Quick note – the pains of moving house.

Just so we’re all up to speed, I am aware that the old posts that I transplanted from Blogger don’t have videos anymore and no longer read properly. It’s a shame, but WordPress has some sort of vendetta against embedding certain video sources. Apologies!